November 10, 2017 5:55 pm

Alberta judge says accused killer’s confession inadmissible because RCMP denied him bathroom break

Photograph of Klaus residence in Castor, Alberta, at the end of the fire

Supplied, RCMP
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A judge has ruled the recorded confession of a man accused of killing a central Alberta couple and their daughter cannot be used as evidence at his trial because RCMP denied him a bathroom break.

Joshua Frank and Jason Klaus are charged with three counts of first-degree murder in the December 2013 deaths of Gordon, Sandra and Monica Klaus.

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Earlier this week video recordings of Frank’s interviews with RCMP were played in court as part of a hearing to determine their admissibility.

Frank told investigators that in the month following the deaths, Jason Klaus paid him between $3,500 and $4,000 for carrying out the murders and for keeping his mouth shut about it.

READ MORE: Co-accused in Alberta murder of Klaus family says he had ‘no choice’

Frank’s lawyer, Andrea Urquhart, argued that her client’s confession was made under oppressive conditions because investigators denied him bathroom breaks.

Justice Eric Macklin, who is hearing the case without a jury, ruled Friday that the confession is not admissible.

During Frank’s interview with police he tearfully said that Klaus had sexually abused him for years starting when he was 14.

That led to Frank breaking down and admitting that he was the one who had shot and killed the three.

During the interview, Frank asked five times over the course of two hours to use the washroom. His requests were not answered by investigators.

The charred remains of the father and the daughter were found inside the family’s farm home near Castor. The mother’s remains were never found but police have said they believe she was inside her family’s farmhouse at the time of the fire.

READ MORE: Court watches Jason Klaus speak to RCMP shortly after fire where his family members’ remains were found

Watch below: On Oct. 23, 2017, Fletcher Kent filed this report about the beginning of a trial for Jason Klaus and his friend Josh Frank, both facing first-degree murder charges, after Klaus’ family members were found dead in a house fire.

The victims were all members of Jason Klaus’s family.

Klaus’s statements were all admitted as evidence.

-With files from RD News Now and Fletcher Kent

© 2017 The Canadian Press

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